I'm doing a term paper on Whaling for my high school zoology class and i'm
doing some research on how the people who are directly involved with marine
biology feel. Could you tell me some of your personal feelings about the
progress that has been made in the whaling effort. Also, after studying the
history and current state of whaling, I begun to wonder what is the best
thing that my peers and I can do to help the whale preserving effort. What
would you recommend? Thank you for your time.
I'm glad you asked for my personal feelings rather than a lot of
statistics, because the statistics are bewildering even if you are very
familiar with them, and I'm not. My feeling is that there has been
tremendous progress in bringing awareness to a critical number of people
globally about the need and the value of preserving the world's whale
populations. On the other hand, it only takes a few small groups of people
with some power within a few national governments for whaling fleets to
wreak horrific carnage on the remaining whales. The IWC is effective only
as long as all whaling nations adhere to its mandates. With Norway taking
minke whales from the North Atlantic and Japan taking minkes from the South
Pacific and Antarctic, a wide variety of smallere kills and pirate whalers,
along with who knows what unreported other species, many whales are still
being killed and that is very troubling.
For advice on what you and your peers can do to help preserve whales, the
first thing is to learn about the groups and organizations that are working
to save whales, and support them if only with a message of appreciation.
Beyond supporting those groups, however, my suggestion is that you learn
about the whales themselves. Far more ancient than ourselves, radiated into
unimaginable forms over millions of years, filling Earth's seas and
adapting to live in every conceivable marine niche, whales have
capabilities scarcely imagined by science or depicted by art or fable.
We've only begun to see the wonders of whales. There's plenty there for you
to seek and ponder, and that sense of mystery and curiosity is what makes
the whales worth saving. Losing whales would be like losing music and art.
If we hold them dear, we'll save them.
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